Source: Martz wants to be Bills coach

Updated: November 26, 2009, 2:25 AM ET
By Tim Graham | ESPN.com

The coaching world hasn't beaten a path to Orchard Park, N.Y.

Multiple reports have stated Jon Gruden, Bill Cowher and Mike Holmgren have rebuffed overtures from the Buffalo Bills about discussing their coaching vacancy. Marty Schottenheimer publicly stated he wasn't interested.

Mike Shanahan met with the Bills this week in Denver, but he interviewed them more than the other way around. Football insiders are skeptical Shanahan's interest is anything more than cursory. Even interim Bills coach Perry Fewell has been cautious in remaining noncommittal about the job.

But finally, a Super Bowl coach has surfaced with genuine interest in becoming Buffalo's next head coach. Mike Martz wants the gig, a league source told ESPN.com.

The Bills have not reached out to Martz, another league source said, but they'll be opening up their search. They've focused on the A-listers since they fired Dick Jauron last week. The Bills interviewed Shanahan for seven hours Monday night and Tuesday morning.

Martz, the former St. Louis Rams head coach, is an intriguing candidate because of his association with Fewell, Bills starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and hot rookie safety Jairus Byrd. The source said Martz is also high on Buffalo's other quarterback, Trent Edwards.

Fewell was the secondary coach for two years under Martz in St. Louis. Byrd's father, Gill Byrd, was a defensive assistant for three years. Martz was also head coach when the Rams drafted Fitzpatrick out of Harvard in 2005.

Martz was the offensive coordinator who oversaw the Greatest Show on Turf, which starred Kurt Warner, Marshall Faulk and Torry Holt and won a Super Bowl. Martz became the Rams' head coach upon Dick Vermeil's retirement and guided them to a 14-2 record and another NFC championship in 2001.

Martz was the Detroit Lions' offensive coordinator for two seasons after a heart ailment prematurely ended his final season with the Rams in 2005 and they eventually fired him. He was the San Francisco 49ers' offensive coordinator last year.

Tim Graham covers the AFC East for ESPN.com.

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